Tuesday, January 9, 2024

Building the Iron Beam

A New Jewish Laser: In the midst of tragedy and sorrow, with Israeli combat casualties mounting and our hostages and families still waiting - here is a small, small piece of goodish news.

Rafael is recruiting!

Who or what is Rafael?, Abq Jew hears you ask. And why should Abq Jew or anyone else care? Well. Candice Krieger of the UK's Jewish News reports that

The company powering Israel’s Iron Dome is on a huge recruitment drive

Rafael has an order backlog of over $11billion and plans to take on 2,000 new people this year

Israeli defence giant Rafael plans to hire 2,000 more people this year to meet the critical increasing demand for its services and products.

Rafael has been at the forefront of Israel’s military efforts against Hamas since 7 October – responsible for the development of the Iron Dome, Israel’s main defence system.

Rafael’s Iron Dome is the world’s most deployed missile defence system, with over 5,000 interceptions. 

It effectively counters rockets, mortars and artillery shells, as well as aircraft, helicopters and UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles) at very close range. 

Iron Dome

Oh yes - the Iron Dome!

Since its very first combat interception on April 7, 2011, Iron Dome has proven to be a groundbreaking air defense system responsible for the resilience and security of the State of Israel. 

Iron Dome was developed in record time of just 2.5 years by a brilliant team of experts led by project manager Chanoch Levin. It has saved countless lives, and indeed may be considered a godsend - or just another Israeli miracle.


But boy, is Iron Dome expensive! (Yes, we all are aware, each human life is priceless - precious, and of infinite value.) And - although its success rate is formidable (about 90%) - Iron Dome does not protect against all types of threats. 

And Iron Dome costs about $50,000 every time it's fired. Therefore -

Please welcome

Iron Beam

Israel's new Iron Beam!

Philadelphia's Jewish Exponent explained it all in December 2023. Starting with the Iron Dome -
The life-saving impact of Israel’s Iron Dome missile defense system is very well known. We have all seen the footage and heard the delayed booming sound effect of an intercepted missile coming shortly after the image of that missile exploding.

Those pictures and videos have been featured on news programs and social media sites over the past several years — but have been especially featured and appreciated in response to the massive barrages of terrorist missiles launched at Israel since Oct. 7.

The advanced technology and efficacy of Iron Dome is impressive. The system is 90% effective in neutralizing incoming missiles. But it is also very expensive. Each Iron Dome battery (from which the individual defensive rockets are launched) can cost $100 million.

And each rocket interceptor costs between $40,000 and $50,000. When the interceptor cost is multiplied by the thousands of rockets and missiles launched by Hamas and other terror partners, the price tag of Israel’s Iron Dome system is staggering.

In addition to cost, there are also practical limitations. Each Iron Dome battery has an average of 60-80 interceptor missiles. If Hamas or Hezbollah fires 100 missiles at the area covered by that single battery, the system would be overwhelmed, and innocent populations could be put at risk during the time it takes to restock the missile battery.

And then moving to the Iron Beam:

But what if Israel had a laser defense system, fueled by electricity, that could fire an unlimited magazine of defensive laser beams to target and destroy incoming mortars and rockets at a fraction of the Iron Dome missile system’s costs and with added accuracy and reliability? 

Such a system could be a game-changer for Israel. And according to reports, Israel has engaged in a limited deployment of exactly such a system and full implementation is almost there.

Israel’s new Iron Beam system wasn’t supposed to be in service for a few more years. But as part of the Hamas war effort, Iron Beam technology is being woven into Iron Dome usage, to destroy, among other things, short-range projectiles that are too close for the Iron Dome to be fully effective.

Iron Beam’s current technology has limitations — the most important of which seems to be its limited range — as the laser beam dissipates over distance.

However - 

The close to zero cost of firing defensive laser beam interceptors after the system is developed, manufactured and installed and the remarkable reliability and efficiency of the defensive response make the Iron Beam system very attractive. 

With those incentives, we have little doubt that Israel and its research partners will solve the remaining laser and technology issues. 

A fully functional Iron Beam laser defense program will save Israeli lives and frustrate terrorist efforts to rain rockets, mortars and destruction over the people of Israel. 

With the threats facing Israel growing daily, an enhanced defensive shield is both necessary and timely.

As long as

Remember when we were all talking about

Jewish Space Lasers

Jewish Space Lasers? 

That was all the way back in February 2021 (see High-Speed Rail and The Jews). Well, since then, Abq Jew has learned a few things about lasers in general and Jewish lasers in particular. 

First, Wikipedia reminds us that
A laser is a device that emits light through a process of optical amplification based on the stimulated emission of electromagnetic radiation. The word laser is an anacronym that originated as an acronym for Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation.
And then informs us that
The first laser was built in 1960 by Theodore Maiman at Hughes Research Laboratories .... 
Theodore Maiman

So - who was Theodore Maiman? Wikipedia tells us
Theodore Harold Maiman (July 11, 1927 – May 5, 2007) was an American engineer and physicist who is widely credited with the invention of the laser.

Maiman was born in Los Angeles to a Jewish family. Abraham "Abe" Maiman, an electrical engineer and inventor, and Rose Abramson. At a young age his family moved to Denver, Colorado, where he helped his father with experimentation in a home electronics laboratory. 
Jewish Space Laser

Just saying

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